[PFS] Need advice for a Kitsune Sorcerer build


Advice

Liberty's Edge

hi, I need some advice on how to build a Kitsune Sorcerer for Pathfinder Society. I know Kitsune make great Enchantment focused Sorcerers, and I was planning on taking the Fey Bloodline, but beyond that I'm not really sure how to go about building the character, I've never used a spellcaster before. I'm planning on taking the Magical Tail feats to augment my known spells since most of the spells granted by the feat are enchantments, and I don't plan on using any metamagic feats right now because I want to get a better feel for how spellcasters function on their own before I go messing around with the more complex mechanics. any advice I can get would be very much appreciated


If you are not used to playing spell casters at all, it might be best not to jump in the deep end. One suggestion is to make a sixth level caster. If you want to stick with the same idea, then I would look into the Occultist. I am willing to admit that I might be overly cautious and that you might be able to adapt to this sort of thing easily. Since this is PFS, you might want to use the free retaining rules to try stuff out. If you are a veteran of PFS and already do this, then I apologize.

Silver Crusade

The Magical Tail feats are too expensive on a Sorcerer, or on any caster. Those are done for mundane characters who have other ways to build their attack routine (like bonus feats or class features) and could use some magical help.
But, as a Sorcerer, you already have those spells, and that would result in a net loss of feats.
To be a good enchanter, you need sky high DCs, easy pass on caster level checks vs spell resistance and a way to circumvent immunity.

I consider these as basic feats:
Spell Focus, Greater Spell Focus, Spell Penetration, Greater Spell Penetration, 3 metamagics (look at Threnodic Spell in order to affect undeads) and Spell Perfection. I know you said no metamagic, but Spell Perfection is almost mandatory on full casters.

I'd consider also Magical Lineage and Eager Performer traits in case you already know what spell make perfect.

Learn at least one enchantment spell per spell level. Use the other slots to learn spells to increase your versatility: summons, direct damage, battlefield control...

EDIT: also, consider going Arcanist with the archetype that gives you a bloodline. In this way, you can further increase your DCs.


Another thought is instead of going Fey, go serpentine bloodline so your enchantments can affect animals and magical beasts. Then pick up a rod of Threnodic Spell when you have the gold which will allow your enchantments to affect undead. That way the only creature types immune to your enchantments now are constructs.

And Gray Warden is correct, the magical tail feats are not worth it for a full caster. You can get by just fine with scrolls and wands as supplements.


Nohwear wrote:
If you are not used to playing spell casters at all, it might be best not to jump in the deep end. One suggestion is to make a sixth level caster.

I would actually say the exact opposite most of the time. Usually with a 6th level caster I feel I have to learn the other class abilities as well as spells whereas with a straight caster spells are my only thing, so I only have to learn spells.

Some points of order. Spell-like abilities =/= spells. You can't get the benefits of your super enchanting DCs on spell-like abilities sadly. So, with spell-like abilities you don't gain the benefits of say Cunning Caster [PFS banned], but do from Conceal Spell. This is kinda silly, and I would not be surprised to see even PFS allowing things to it. But, relying on Magical Tails when you already have a lot of uses per day of your spells is probably still bad. Any way you slice it, Magical Tails don't make the cut on sorcerers. If they did, you would want Nine-Tailed Scion

Kitsune Sorcerer FCB - Probably obvious since you know Kitsune make good sorcerers, but this is why.

Realistic Likeness - Broken in the best possible way! Who says I have to be a furry to play Kitsune? I'll just be everyone.

Gray Warden has good advise on feats and traits... But no Arcanist! You don't get the awesome FCB and the Bloodline Arcanist is meh.

Honestly, the drawback of not having a spell book isn't really a drawback when your goal is to solve every problem with your hammer. Quite frankly, the goal is to be a Tier 2 class with more BANG to your nukes than a Tier 1 class. You heavily outpower the Arcanist and Wizard, but at the cost of focus.

Liberty's Edge

The Mortonator wrote:


Some points of order. Spell-like abilities =/= spells. You can't get the benefits of your super enchanting DCs on spell-like abilities sadly.

But, relying on Magical Tails when you already have a lot of uses per day of your spells is probably still bad. Any way you slice it, Magical Tails don't make the cut on sorcerers. If they did, you would want Nine-Tailed Scion

Kitsune Sorcerer FCB - Probably obvious since you know Kitsune make good sorcerers, but this is why.

Realistic Likeness - Broken in the best possible way! Who says I have to be a furry to play Kitsune? I'll just be everyone.

I didn't realize the Kitsune Magic racial trait wouldn't affect the Magical Tails abilities, the description in the book just says the DCs are CHA based so I just assumed it would work since they're enchantment effects.

And I'm definitely grabbing Realistic Likeness, I have that on my Kitsune Rogue and it is by-far one of my favorite abilities


Mean Dean wrote:
I didn't realize the Kitsune Magic racial trait wouldn't affect the Magical Tails abilities, the description in the book just says the DCs are CHA based so I just assumed it would work since they're enchantment effects.

Yeeeeah, it's a bit daft and some things should probably be errated for both.


The Mortonator wrote:
Mean Dean wrote:
I didn't realize the Kitsune Magic racial trait wouldn't affect the Magical Tails abilities, the description in the book just says the DCs are CHA based so I just assumed it would work since they're enchantment effects.
Yeeeeah, it's a bit daft and some things should probably be errated for both.

Just wondering where it does say that you dont get the benefits to spell-likes, technically they are called "spell-likes" for a reason?

Are you sure you are not talking about the Extraordinary or Super-Natural abilities?


Dracoknight wrote:
The Mortonator wrote:
Mean Dean wrote:
I didn't realize the Kitsune Magic racial trait wouldn't affect the Magical Tails abilities, the description in the book just says the DCs are CHA based so I just assumed it would work since they're enchantment effects.
Yeeeeah, it's a bit daft and some things should probably be errated for both.

Just wondering where it does say that you dont get the benefits to spell-likes, technically they are called "spell-likes" for a reason?

Are you sure you are not talking about the Extraordinary or Super-Natural abilities?

Well, they are spell-like, as in simular but not as. TBF, a while back it was originally ruled that having a spell-like counts as casting a spell. Which lead to early access PrCs. However, they changed that and have been moving in the direction that the two are distint.

Like I said, a bit daft. If you wanna ask your GM if things like Spell Focus work, by all means do. I think Spell Focus is just legacy wording errors myself.

Ability Focus does work, but no way on that in PFS.


I found something a bit back.
Since there havent been a FAQ about it yet, i guess Owens words is the closest we get for an answer.


Dracoknight wrote:

I found something a bit back.

Since there havent been a FAQ about it yet, i guess Owens words is the closest we get for an answer.
My own possibly wrong self since I can't remember where I saw this at wrote:
TBF, a while back it was originally ruled that having a spell-like counts as casting a spell. ... However, they changed that and have been moving in the direction that the two are distinct.


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Oh well, personally me and my group rule Spell-likes of being spells for those purposes at least.

But i always considered "spell-likes" for being "Like a spell" in the purpose that they are basically a spell with a weird form of casting as its a inate magical capability of the creature. ( Whereas ability focus and the like are for those which are not "like-spells" if you get my drift ^^;, )


Dracoknight wrote:

Oh well, personally me and my group rule Spell-likes of being spells for those purposes at least.

But i always considered "spell-likes" for being "Like a spell" in the purpose that they are basically a spell with a weird form of casting as its a inate magical capability of the creature. ( Whereas ability focus and the like are for those which are not "like-spells" if you get my drift ^^;, )

Oh, in a home game I would absolutely agree. I just wouldn't count on that for PFS at all. While you can probably get away with it with some people, others might peg you for it and near as I can tell they wouldn't be wrong.

Here's the relevant FaQs. And if you look at anything from Ultimate Intrigue you will notice the new wording on everything that applies to both. This implies (though doesn't state) the direction Pathfinder is moving in.

And again, I totally expect errata fixing past things to include this wording. I'm just saying that RaW the word "like" is very shakey ground in Pathfinder and often ruled against.


Ok, a few things.

I think sorc is the perfect class to learn about casters. You have the time to get advice on you spells known from a gajillion people online, but you only have to really learn a small number of them at a time.

A major question is what are you going to do out of combat. Typical answer is the face character. Actually kinda tough to do with so few skill points. However you can greatly augment it with a few spells to help you communicate and influence. Tounges, raiment of command, bluff, etc... However that does eat into your spells known.

You are asking for PFS, so I don't believe the sky high DCs are really necessary. Though spell focus and greater are still great.
I am not as big a fan of spell perfection as many people. I just think it is too expensive to get.
I always suggest a sorc take at least 1 metamagic. What if none of your 5th level spells apply, but you still have the slots? Heighten and persistent are to of my favs.
Threnodic spell is great. Another option is to just use buffs when fighting something you can't enchant. Haste, communal protection from evil, ect... are almost always appreciated.

Don't specialize too much in enchantment. You should always have a few defensive spells like mirror image and shield. Same with utility like fly or teleport.

We can give more specific advice if you post a build along with your planned feats, spells, and roles.


The Mortonator wrote:
Dracoknight wrote:

I found something a bit back.

Since there havent been a FAQ about it yet, i guess Owens words is the closest we get for an answer.
My own possibly wrong self since I can't remember where I saw this at wrote:
TBF, a while back it was originally ruled that having a spell-like counts as casting a spell. ... However, they changed that and have been moving in the direction that the two are distinct.

That FAQ ruling you reference was specifically for whether or not the spell like ability satisfied the spell-casting ability requirement for entering prestige classes.

"Spell-Like Abilities, Casting, and Prerequisites: Does a creature with a spell-like ability count as being able to cast that spell for the purpose of prerequisites or requirements?

Only if the pre-requisite calls out the name of a spell explicitly. For instance, the Dimensional Agility feat (Ultimate Combat) has "ability to use the abundant step class feature or cast dimension door" as a prerequisite; a barghest has dimension door as a spell-like ability, so the barghest meets the "able to cast dimension door prerequisite for that feat. However, the barghest's dimension door would not meet requirements such as "Ability to cast 4th level spells" or "Ability to cast arcane spells"."

The only other FAQs on the subject deal with whether you can use a Spell Like Ability to satisfy an item creation feat requirement (yes), whether or not having a spell like ability counts has having that spell on your spell list for spell completion or spell trigger items (no), and whether a spell like ability is arcane or divine (depends).

I can't find anything in the FAQs (though it was an admittedly brief search) that indicates they do not count as casting spells.

Liberty's Edge

I think I'll just skip Magical Tail on this character and worry about the feats after I've got more of the basics set. What do I do about AC? Right now I've got my DEX set at 12(with the +2 Kitsune racial bonus raising that to 14) and I bought a haramaki to boost my AC by 1 without the spell failure chance, but what else can I do?


Mean Dean wrote:
I think I'll just skip Magical Tail on this character and worry about the feats after I've got more of the basics set. What do I do about AC? Right now I've got my DEX set at 12(with the +2 Kitsune racial bonus raising that to 14) and I bought a haramaki to boost my AC by 1 without the spell failure chance, but what else can I do?

Shield + Mage Armor is your best bet for quite a while.

Buy a wand of Mage Armor or Shield to perserve spellslots. You do lose out on your Haramaki, but the plan is that you enchant it either to +3 where you dont need mage armor anymore, or to +1 + Spell storing to store a "Frigid Touch" spell which you can use when someone strikes you.

And yeah magical tail is a drain for you, and its not that big of a loss since you gain these abilities through your spells regardless.

There is 2 meta magic feats that allows you to affect undead or plant creatures, but theres a bit of a requirement to both and i think you can pick them up as meta rods later.

Later you have access to spells like cat's grace so that should help you with dex for your ranged touch spells, and your AC.

Liberty's Edge

Dracoknight wrote:


Shield + Mage Armor is your best bet for quite a while.
Buy a wand of Mage Armor or Shield to perserve spellslots. You do lose out on your Haramaki, but the plan is that you enchant it either to +3 where you dont need mage armor anymore, or to +1 + Spell storing to store a "Frigid Touch" spell which you can use when someone strikes you.

And yeah magical tail is a drain for you, and its not that big of a loss since you gain these abilities through your spells regardless.

Later you have access to spells like cat's grace so that should help you with dex for your ranged touch spells, and your AC.

Thanks for the advice for AC boosts.

Actually my original reasoning for planning on using Magical Tail was that since I can learn those spells anyway I could use the feat to get them and free up my spells known for other useful spells for combat and buffs


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It is very difficult to get a sorc AC up to a useful point. I prefer miss chance or other defensive options. Mirror Image, invisibility, flight, dimension door, displacement, protection from X, stone skin, ablative armor, false life, etc...

My 11th level sorc usually runs around with his AC only at 15. Yet he is still rarely hit.


ElterAgo wrote:

It is very difficult to get a sorc AC up to a useful point. I prefer miss chance or other defensive options. Mirror Image, invisibility, flight, dimension door, displacement, protection from X, stone skin, ablative armor, false life, etc...

My 11th level sorc usually runs around with his AC only at 15. Yet he is still rarely hit.

Of course teamwork helps too. If your party tank is doing their job right, you shouldn't have to use all your resources. I'd still have a fly spell just in case. ;)

Liberty's Edge

What are some suggestions for spells for the first level?


Magic Missile and Mage Armor at first, then use the free the retraining rules to swap them out for spells that fit your character better as you are able get wands.


Actually, I wouldn't bother with Magic Missile at all. If you absolutely need to do damage, use a crossbow and the unlimited use Acid Splash cantrip. You'll get more mileage and contribute more to party-wide damage with a buff like Enlarge Person, and if you have a reach weapon or TWF martial in your party, they'll love you for the buff.

Liberty's Edge

Saldiven wrote:
Actually, I wouldn't bother with Magic Missile at all. If you absolutely need to do damage, use a crossbow and the unlimited use Acid Splash cantrip. You'll get more mileage and contribute more to party-wide damage with a buff like Enlarge Person, and if you have a reach weapon or TWF martial in your party, they'll love you for the buff.

Bad advice.

Magic missile is awesome, especially in a low level party without many options.

Enemy with high AC? Incorporeal enemy? You will be the hero of the party and rescue them from what would otherwise be a TPK.


Yeah, those three or four castings of d4+1 are really going to turn the tide of battle at first level. At fifth, it's a whopping 10.5 average damage per round.

If your GM is throwing incorporeal creatures at you before the party has access to magic weapons, I don't know what to tell you, but again, that microscopic amount of damage isn't going to be relevant enough to make a difference.

When you look at the expected damage for Magic Missile compared to what a dedicated damage dealer martial would do, the party as a whole would be better off if the Sorcerer cast Magic Weapon on the Two-Hander fighting Barbarian or the Archer Ranger, for example. Magic Weapon would also be useful in pretty much every other combat the party runs into until they all have their own enchanted weaponry.

And then, you could have a spell that makes a meaningful difference in almost every combat, or you can have a spell that makes a meaningful difference against the rare incorporeal creature or that time your GM thought it was a good idea to throw a creature with a significantly higher than normal AC at the party.

Magic Missile used to be a must have, but with the missile cap and the expansion of the number of good spells out there, it's second tier at best, similar to pretty much every other direct damage spell out there.

Edit: Also, there is no reason to even consider Magic Missile until you have Color Spray.

Edit2: Remember that this character is being built as an Enchantment focused build, so will not have the resources to become particularly good at direct damage casting.

Contributor

In my opinion, magic missiles is a spell that you just need. Its often a no-questions-asked damage-dealing "ping." As a fey bloodline sorcerer, it has amazingly potent synergy with the sorcerer's robe, and you can't rely on having a decent wand of magic missiles unless you happen to come across one on a chronicle sheet.

Its not a spell that you're always going to want, but the ability to ping people has its uses when your other tactics don't work. (Like against undead or things immune to mind-affecting effects.)

Plus in PFS, people tend to have magic weapons by Level 3 because wealth and gear purchasing is significantly more consistent than in most home games, meaning that you're likely going to go a whole level while magic weapon isn't doing anything helpful, compared to magic missile which will be 2d4+2 (or two 1d4+1). Personally, I usually carry a few scrolls of magic weapon (they cost like 50 gold each) and save my spell slots for other spells.


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I suggest getting a wand of Magic Missile after earning your first 2 or 4 prestige points. (It goes without saying that Cire Light Wounds should be picked up ASAP for healing between fights.) A garunteed 1d4+1 damage every round allows you to conserve early precious spell slots. Plus, in Tier 1-2 Scenarios, that's a respectable number since monsters have low HP. You are also avoiding the inevitable -8 penalty to crossbow/Acid Splash attacks as the melee double move into range on their first turn.

Enchantment is a very narrow school. You can get away with one, maybe two spells per spell level. Save the rest for spells that will cover your bases. For example, you could start out with Charm Person and Enlarge Person. You now have one of the best buffs for the first half of the game, and even without charming you're an asset to most groups. Throw in Burning Hands and you have both a backup damage spell and an answer to swarms. Trust me, in my PFS experience the vast majority of characters who are not Alchemists or Kineticists have no solid means of dealing with them. Last but not least, something like Obscuring Mist or Silent Image provides utility that stays with you as you level.

When you get 2nd level spells? Hideous Laughter is a decent debuff that shares your favored school. Invisibility is down right amazing, and Glitterdust is a spell you will be happy to have. If you like dealing damage, Scorching Ray is decent. At this level, Charm Person and your Charisma based skills can still rock the social encounters.

Also. Note that Sorcerers allow the occasional free retraining on spells known, so don't be affraid to take a strong spell with a short shelf life.

Following a general pattern of Charm + Buff + Combat + Utility for each set of spells known will ensure you can follow your theme while having things to do when a scenario thows a curveball at the team.

Edit: Oh right, defensive spells. Oops. Having a wand of Protection from Evil helps for a variety of reasons, Mage Armor on a wand is a boon to you and any Monks or Animal Companions in the party, and Mirror Image does wonders against attackers. After that, you'll have room to pick up feats to know extra spells, so feel free to add "Survivability" to the list above.

Liberty's Edge

Saldiven wrote:

Yeah, those three or four castings of d4+1 are really going to turn the tide of battle at first level. At fifth, it's a whopping 10.5 average damage per round.

Yeah, they really do. I was born in the 60s and have been playing D&D since it came out, and magic missile is always a viable option.

I have been in so many battles where it has turned the tide, that your claim it does not matter is laughable in its naivete.

Tonight my spouse attacked the BBEG in a PF game with magic missile and it was definitely instrumental in his defeat.

I think you are perhaps theory-crafting too much if you don't think magic missile is an awesome spell.

When I play something like a lorekeeper oracle, and I get one spell from the sorcerer/wizard spell list, you bet that I choose magic missile...

Liberty's Edge

I apologize for my last post... It was late :D at night and I was feeling grumpy. Instead, I would like to replace it with the post:

I still think magic missile is a good spell.


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Magical Tails?

Have you considered perhaps going Oracle
and taking the
Wrecking Mysticism curse?

Everytime that you gain an additional mystery spell, you replace it with the magical tail feat instead.

I had a kinda cool build concept with a Kistune Oracle Waves(or Winter) /Marid Bloodline Sorceror.

So Basically:

The marid bloodline Sorceror arcana lets you:
"Whenever you cast a spell that deals energy damage, you can change the type of damage to cold. This also changes the spell’s descriptors to match this energy type."

So burning hands? It is now freezing hands. Fireball? Now its a giant snowball explosion.

NOW, you combine it with the Waves(Or winter) Freezing Spells revelation:
"Freezing Spells (Su): Whenever a creature fails a saving throw and takes cold damage from one of your spells, it is slowed (as the slow spell) for 1 round. Spells that do not allow saves do not slow creatures. At 11th level, the slow duration increases to 1d4 rounds."

So if they fail their reflex to half the damage from your burning hands? They are slowed.

They failed their fort save against a cold ear piercing scream? They are slowed.

So from the oracle side, you just take damaging spells. And from an utility side, your wrecking mysticism will be providing you with spell like abilities from the magical tail feat.

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